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NCJ Number: 98259 Find in a Library
Title: Use of Forfeiture Sanctions in Drug Cases
Author(s): L D Stellwagen
Corporate Author: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This summary analyzes major provisions of State forfeiture laws as they apply to narcotics trafficking, reports on a survey of 50 prosecutors regarding their use of such laws, and suggests practical steps for expanding the use of this legal tool.
Abstract: Although Federal prosecutors have used forfeitures in several major drug cases, use of forfeiture at State and local levels has been limited. Virtually all States authorize forfeiture in connection with drug trafficking and manufacture. State forfeiture provisions commonly permit the seizure of the following: conveyances; raw materials, products, and equipment used in drug manufacture, cultivation, and trafficking; drug paraphernalia; and criminal research and records. More States are adding traceable assets such as jewelry and houses that are purchased with drug profits. In disposing of forfeited property, most State laws provide that outstanding liens be paid first followed by administrative costs of forfeiture. Over half the States provide that confiscated property goes to the State or local treasury, but others allow law enforcement agencies to keep the property for official use. Some legislatures have allocated forfeitures to special causes like drug rehabilitation programs or victim restitution funds. To prevent innocent people from losing their property, legislatures often include exceptions to forfeiture. Many expressly limit the application of forfeiture to serious drug offenses. State forfeiture statutes must address several administrative issues, such as who can initiate proceedings, the time of filing, notices and hearings, filing a response, and actions in replevin. Most prosecutors interviewed for the study were satisfied with the use of forfeiture for narcotics cases. The paper suggests improvements in current forfeiture laws. A chart shows a State-by-State breakdown of drug-related forfeiture provisions. For full report, see 98122.
Index Term(s): Drug forfeiture; Drug law enforcement; Forfeiture law; State-by-state analyses
Note: National Institute of Justice Research in Brief.
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